NCRM Autumn School 2015 for Early Career Researchers: Radical Interdisciplinarity in the social sciences
Dates: 9-11 September 2015
Venue: George Square, University of Edinburgh
The National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM) will be holding the tenth residential training event for early career researchers on 9-11 September 2015 in Edinburgh. The Autumn School is led by Professor Graham Crow.
The NCRM Autumn School programme is designed to cover various aspects of the methodological implications of research and researchers moving across and beyond disciplinary boundaries. Recently there have been interesting and challenging debates about social sciences being ‘shaken up’ in radical ways as ideas and methodological practices cross the boundaries of the social sciences. For example, see Amanda Goodall and Andrew Oswald’s thought-provoking article ‘Do the social sciences need a shake up?’
There are 25 fully funded (travel, accommodation) places for early career researchers from across the social sciences, including some from NCRM, some from other academic institutions, and some from other sectors. The audience will be mixed in terms of disciplines, methodological traditions and substantive areas of research.
Please note: These are provisional session titles and details may change.
Wed 9 Sept pm
|Intro||Graham Crow (NCRM, Edinburgh) and Mark Elliot (NCRM, Manchester): Introductory session|
|Session 1||Ian Simpson (Stirling) ‘The place of interdisciplinarity in big issues-focused research’|
This presentation will focus on the merits of starting with a question/problem and then drawing on different disciplines as appropriate. It will explore how those disciplines come to be identified through personal as well as institutional influences, and consider how as projects develop there may be 'turf wars' and debating points from different disciplinary positions that need to be managed and resolved in order for the added value of interdisciplinary collaboration to be realised.
Thu 10 Sept am
|Session 1||Ann Bruce (Edinburgh) ‘Interdisciplinarity and impact’|
Both policy makers and industry ask questions of academic researchers, but these questions can rarely be answered by individual academic disciplines. There is a need for more interdisciplinary outputs and interactions with stakeholders if impact is to be achieved in many areas. This lecture will consider some of the lessons learned in practice from crossing the BBSRC-NERC-ESRC divide, and attempting to facilitate improved knowledge exchange and ultimately impact.
|Session 2||Share a problem session: 3 volunteers from among delegates each present an issue for collective discussion|
Thu 10 Sept pm
|Session 1||Anne Murcott (Nottingham) ‘Lessons from crossing disciplinary boundaries in The Nation’s Diet research programme’|
The talk starts from a very brief statement of the ESRC Programme ‘“The Nation’s Diet’: the social science of food choice’ to note the experience of directed this 6 year multi-disciplinary programme. It takes into account the background against which I undertook this work of teaching sociology in a medical school and shows how I came to the conclusion that crossing disciplinary boundaries in any rigorous fashion then – and now – remained a long way off.
|Session 2||Laura Meagher (independent consultant) 'Challenges & opportunities: from career strategies to practicalities'|
|This interactive session will frame key challenges and opportunities afforded by interdisciplinarity, provoking reflection through imaginative exercises and lively discussion. The focus will be on how individuals can 'manage' their own interdisciplinarity, for example in the development of career strategies or research proposals.|
Fri 11 Sept am
|Session 1||Mhairi MacKenzie (Glasgow) ‘How many disciplines does it take to explain the Glasgow effect?’|
|This session considers the myriad explanations for Scottish (and Glaswegian) excess mortality (from pets to politics) and sets out the interdisciplinary challenge of providing a multi-level and interdisciplinary evidence base and synthesised explanatory framework.|
|Session 2||Morag McDermont (Bristol) ‘Crossing boundaries where social sciences and law meet arts and humanities’|
|Productive Margins is an interdisciplinary, collaborative research programme between academics and community organisations in Bristol and South Wales that seeks to co-produce new forms of engagement in decision-making across politics, policies, business and the arts. Regulatory processes have a huge impact on everyday lives, from policing practices to planning rules, from the way internet sites are designed to the ways in which people access art, museums and heritage sites. Starting from the premise that all too often communities feel disempowered when they participate in regulatory processes, our programme of research asks: What would happen if diverse communities and academics came together to re-shape engagement, to work creatively with ideas that touch on society, law, history and art? Can research release the creativity, knowledge and passions of communities at the margins of power to co-produce new forms of decision-making?|
Who is it for?
The NCRM Autumn School is targeted at post-doctoral early career researchers from across the UK social science community who are employed on research-led contracts and who often do not have the same opportunities to participate in training events as PhD students and junior lecturers. Sessions will not assume expert knowledge, but some familiarity with comparative research will be an advantage.
Applying for a place
Applications should be made by email to Claire Spencer by 15 June 2015. Please include the following details in your application:
- your name
- your education
- your research history, including current position and project)
- a 200-word supporting statement describing how you would benefit from attending the autumn school
Once you have sent your application to Claire Spencer the NCRM team will consider the applications and inform applicants of the outcome by mid-June. Any questions about the autumn school (including the application process) should be sent to Claire Spencer.